No lights?! Watch out!

On October 9, 2008, in Ghana, road traffic injuries, by Karen Grepin

I am currently back in Ghana for a couple of weeks to collect some final data for my doctoral dissertation. Whenever I travel to Africa I take a number of precautions to protect my health: malarone for malaria prophylaxis, extra vitamins for jet lag and colds, and avoiding most (but not all!) street food.

However, what worries me the most is getting hurt in a car accident. I have now been in the country just over 24 hours, and have had a few adventures. Yesterday, while driving home the clutch on my taxi malfunctioned sending us all flying forward (of course there are no seat belts). I managed to catch myself before hitting my head on the front windshield. I had to find a new taxi to get home.

While I noticed some new stretches of pavement since my trip in June (election year?), I read about the fact that many street lights in town (there are not actually that many of them) have been out for a long time, some for many months. These light outs have led to increased accidents at these intersections.

While Ghana is certainly changing rapidly, and developing quickly, it is too bad that such basic services, even in the most urban areas, are not being met.

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